Beans, beans- the musical fruit

Dear Home-Ec 101,

To save money, I have started incorporating a lot of dried beans into my diet. Unfortunately, I’ve been experiencing lots of, um, gastrointestinal distress. To put it bluntly, my gas is very embarrassing. I don’t want to take beano, are there any other ways to combat this?


Gina in Gaston

WinkIvy says:

Several months ago, I started eating 2/3rds of my meals without meat, and I had the same problems you have. Fortunately, your Auntie Ivy is here to help:

  • Make sure you soak your beans at least overnight. Rinse them well before cooking.
  • Throw a pinch of baking soda into the cooking beans.*
  • Make sure you are chewing your beans very well. The less masticated they are, the more likely they are to produce gas.
  • Make sure you are drinking plenty of water, and avoid carbonated beverages.
  • Don’t worry! Your body will adjust to your new way of eating soon. Whenever you make a major change in the way you eat, your body won’t dig it until it gets used to the new way of doing things.

Good luck with your new diet! Beans are an excellent way to incorporate protein in your diet and they are very inexpensive as well.

*This may be an old wives’ tale, as my mom told me to do this. She’s old, and a wife, so there ya go. I do it anyway, it seems to help.


  1. Paula on July 12, 2007 at 3:17 pm

    We take about an inch of Kombu (seaweed) and cook it with our beans. It really works! Don’t soak it first (it comes dried). Just throw it into the soak water with the dried beans. Take another piece and throw it into the cook water. 🙂 If you want to save on money, you can use the same piece of kombu from the soak water in the cook water. IF you are still having problems, make sure to use a fresh piece in each the soak and cook waters.

  2. Ron on July 10, 2007 at 12:26 am

    What about Gas-X, or Beano?